Rain Jacket Recomendations- Mtbr.com
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  1. #1
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    Rain Jacket Recomendations

    Hey everyone,

    I'm looking for, what I believe, a bit of a needle in a haystack here.

    I've been MTBing for a few years but this is my first year of really getting into it and riding a lot. I've had a great summer of riding but with the Portland winter of rain coming I'm bummed that my riding will really slow down.

    Anyone have a recommendation for a rain jacket? I'm looking for something a little light because I tend to get very hot when I ride. I went riding last winter and wore my current rain jacket and it stuck to me like glue and I finally just had to ditch it and deal with being wet - it was awful wearing it.

    Any advice on a jacket thats light and still has "breath-ability"?

    Thanks

  2. #2
    Elitest thrill junkie
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    It's hard to get something light enough to breath well during exertion. Either it's not raining very hard, which means you don't cool off as much and you can get away with very little water-proof-ness (trading for breath-ability), or it's raining heavier and you tend to get more soaked no matter what, but you stay reasonably warm if working hard enough with a true water-proof jacket. I've also had good luck using a vest-type layer in lighter rain, arms get a little wet, but that cools you off and you don't get too over-heated. I also use packable water-proof jackets, the lightest weight ones by Patagonia, OR, etc. These can pack to the size of your fist or so and provide a decent amount of warmth, mostly because anything waterproof doesn't breath well under the relatively extreme exertion of mountain biking (compared to hiking). So these ultra-light waterproof jackets tend to be the best at breathing, plus they dry quickly and are easy to stash. The Patagonia one I have has pit-zips. I had an OR, but the zipper handle failed and the design wouldn't allow re-inserting it. Also, if it's really pouring, a hood is nice, especially a hood with the little visor-thing (under your helmet, but some can stretch over).
    "It's only when you stand over it, you know, when you physically stand over the bike, that then you say 'hey, I don't have much stand over height', you know"-T. Ellsworth

    You're turning black metallic.

  3. #3
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    ^^^ yeah. I try to stay warm, not necessarily dry. If it's a warm rain, I embrace it. If it's cool, I'll wear something that blocks the wind and layers beneath as needed expecting to get damp or wet either from rain and sweat.
    Do the math.

  4. #4
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    I don't get rain often, but when I do I have a Showers Pass jacket that works great.
    Removable hood and has ventilation zippers. They are a bit farther forward then standard pit-zips they seem to work great.

  5. #5
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    I picked up a Marmot Precip for about 50 bucks a few weeks ago (they seem to be blowing these out online). I bought it for summer camping in the AZ high country where it rains almost daily during the monsoon season. I'll use it for biking if it's cold enough though, seems like any 'rain' jacket that is waterproof is going to trap lots of humidity during exercise so it's going to be a compromise no matter what. The Precip does scrunch up to a water bottle size, folds in its own pocket, has pit zips and a hood that rolls up and tucks away in to the collar. It's lightweight, and I have very little faith the material would survive catching a tree branch without tearing, but it's exactly what I was looking for at the time.

  6. #6
    Snow Dog
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    I have been using my Novara jacket from REI now for 4 years in Ohio/Michigan. It is also my winter riding coat as well. I get hot real fast, so I only really wear it if it is monsooning or cold. I ride in normal drizzle and showers in my normal riding gear cause being wet keeps me cool. It has pit zips, and works realy well when it is cooler.

    In the winter (50*F down to 10*F) I put on a base layer, a mid weight top layer, and the jacket, and am usually very warm and dry
    Go practice. Figure it out. - Fleas

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  7. #7
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    I can't stand the rain jackets with the plasticish interior. When you start to sweat, it sticks to your skin and drives me nuts. Anything from a decent brand with a mesh liner would work. Mine is actually an Eddie Bauer that stuffs into one of its pockets, which fits easily into my pack.

  8. #8
    Big Test Icycles
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    Love my Showers Pass IMBA jacket. Iím in the PDX area and this jacket works well with our rain. Light enough to pack and works well with a light wool layer for cool days, vents pretty well and has a removable hood.


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

  9. #9
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    Breathability is a myth. If you mean ventilation -- like with pit zips and opening the main zip -- then there are lots of good jackets out there these days. Go to your local REI and try some on. Expect to spend ~$100 or so on something decent.

  10. #10
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    Get a Columbia OutDry jacket. I have one, and it's the most incredible piece of raingear I've ever encountered. It doesn't wet out like stupid Goretex, you can wear it under a pack, and it's so breathable that I can feel wind through it when I ride! (I commute with it in the rain.) Of course, it's still a jacket, so I sweat when it's warm, but not any more than if I was wearing a sweater. Seriously, this stuff is awesome.

  11. #11
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    Fellow Portlander. Breathability is a myth (as Mikesee said) at mtb exertion levels, you end up wet either way. I prefer a running type jacket with a thin liner and I sprey it with nikwax. With this I'm wet but usually plenty warm for the downhills. The liner really helps move the moisture off you and keeps the jacket from bunching up/sticking. For bigger rides where hypothermia is a real risk I pack a thin layer and an actual rain jacket just in case. With that I don't really ride through winter per say, more spring & fall. I'd post on the Oregon forum, almost all those guys are Portlanders or Vancouver. Unless your commuting I wouldn't kick down the money for showers pass, you'll sweat in that like a sauna just the same.
    It is no measure of health to be well adjusted to a profoundly sick society.

  12. #12
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    I picked up a Venture 2 from the North Face. It's got some zippers under the armpits if you get warm and don't want to unzip the front. The hood is pretty big too...it can fit over my helmet. It's a little baggier than I thought...good for layering I guess. Fairly thin and can pack into itself taking up little space in my pack.

    To keep the jacket from sticking to me...I'll wear a fairly thin base layer under my short sleeve jersey.

    https://www.thenorthface.com/shop/me...f0a2vd3#hero=0

  13. #13
    Elitest thrill junkie
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    Quote Originally Posted by Goshawk View Post
    I can't stand the rain jackets with the plasticish interior. When you start to sweat, it sticks to your skin and drives me nuts. Anything from a decent brand with a mesh liner would work. Mine is actually an Eddie Bauer that stuffs into one of its pockets, which fits easily into my pack.
    Lets take a step back though, they work fine IME with a base-layer or something with full-sleeves, and if you think you might need such a jacket on a ride, it's best to start with a synthetic lightweight long-sleeve type base layer or jersey, something you can just pull the sleeves up if you get too warm. If you are in a t-shirt riding with a jacket, I'd assume it's so warm that you really wouldn't need the jacket much anyway. I used mine the other day for some trail-work when it was snraining and finally changed over to snow, worked great though because I had a base-layer on beneath it. I agree they can be clammy and sticky if your bare skin is up against it, but if it's that warm, IMO you don't really need a waterproof jacket much anyway, nothing is going to breathe at those temps (your body heat will overpower anything).
    "It's only when you stand over it, you know, when you physically stand over the bike, that then you say 'hey, I don't have much stand over height', you know"-T. Ellsworth

    You're turning black metallic.

  14. #14
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    I have a light weight Patagonia gore-Tex jacket that is great. I believe they market it as a running jacket.

    Packs small, no hood, and sleeves and back is long enough. Iíve worn it in summer rain & hail storms and been pretty comfortable.

    I found it on sale but still costly. Then again if I rip it I think they will repair or replace it.
    --Reamer

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